Frequently Asked Questions
DFS Private Wealth has no quotas, or any requirement, to sell any types of products. DFS is completely independent and always recommends product based on the situation of the client. Being with Mandeville offers the opportunity for our clients to access private equity and alternative investments as well as the usual equities, bonds, funds, ETfs etc.
Our product research is done by Janet and Jennifer and the DFS team. Jennifer is a Portfolio Manager and we use Morningstar for our research. Our focus is value based. Different product types from stocks to mutual funds and ETFs allow for a diversified portfolio while keeping taxes and fees low to maximize returns. All the team's designations are listed in the “Meet the DFS Team” section.
Products are reviewed consistently. At DFS we believe in using a smaller number of products which allows us to continually monitor them on an ongoing basis. Since we are watching them so closely it also allows us to be proactive in the event that we see a needed change.
At DFS Private Wealth we operate under the discretionary management style. We believe in having our clients involved in the execution of their plan but in order to provide the best investment management it is important to be able to be agile and make decisions quickly which is why the Discretionary platform is of great benefit. We work as a team and are always available to answer questions that clients may have. We believe it is important that our clients understand why things are being done a certain way, an informed investor is a more disciplined investor.
DFS is an independent wealth management firm. Our dealer is Mandeville Private Client which is an independent dealer. This allows two different things. Firstly it allows us to choose the products that fit the clients’ situations best in order to achieve their vision/goal.
And secondly it allows us access to private equity solutions and other alternative investments for high net worth individuals. Whether or not our clients already have accountants, lawyers, or planners that they work with we are able to provide connections to those professionals or work directly with the people they already have in place. We feel it is very important to ensure clients have taken care of the additional planning areas such as estates, inheritances or bequests, aging parents, children’s education, business succession, insurance, and any other matters that come up.
Product selection is largely based on the goals of the client. At DFS we have a very specific and unique process.
In the past clients have told us they would like to get crystal clear on their goals and the plan to achieving those goals. We have developed a process that focuses on all areas, one at a time based on its priority, which allows us to accomplish something at each meeting. When was the last time you met with your advisor and when you left you felt that you had actually accomplished something? Each meeting takes you one step closer to achieving your Vision when you work with DFS.
All of these factors are taken into consideration when selecting product and risk allocation for portfolio construction. However, there is also one more important factor that needs to be discussed before any investment recommendations can be made and that is whether or not there is a need for cash flow. If your current advisor is not taking the time to determine how to provide tax efficient cash flow and refers to "income" rather than "cash flow" then they don't truly understand taxes.
Private equity can be higher risk which is why it is very important to ensure proper due diligence is being done.Each investor has a liquidity factor and we need to understand what percentage of the assets should be liquid and how much can be illiquid before proper diversification and recommendations can be made. In order to enhance returns high quality private equity can be used.
The foundation of our philosophy is educating the client. We believe it is important to work as a team with clients but most importantly to have a client who understands the overall plan. An informed investor who understands why a decision is being made and how it will help them to achieve their vision is important to the success of the plan.
There are a number of things that you can do to ensure you are paying as little tax as possible. One of the easiest things is to ensure you have the highest taxable earning investments in your registered accounts with the lower taxable investments, like capital gains, in the non registered account.
Janet is a CPA C.A. with tax expertise that are at the basis of our portfolio construction. We do not prepare tax returns for our clients but rather use our tax knowledge to enhance your portfolio and we work collaboratively with your accountant to ensure we are all on the same page. Part of that is reviewing returns and discussing additional opportunities for possible tax savings.
We meet with our clients up to four times a year. This is important to ensure that we are all on the same page in full understanding of the clients’ vision and goals. By meeting regularly it also allows us to spend focused time on each topic that needs to be addressed and to actually accomplish something at each meeting. By prioritizing we can ensure that we cover all the bases over time and as things come up we can address them as a priority or add them to the list. Between meetings we are always accessible as well to address any needs that arise.
Mandeville Private Client provides online account access and your statements will be delivered to your online portal. With electronic delivery it ensures you have the statements in a timely manner and can always access them. They are able to be printed if you prefer paper or you can simply save them to your computer or USB key.
We strive to make as much of the fees tax deductible as possible. Depending on your situation there are different things we can do to make more fees tax deductible. We will also work with your accountant, if you have one, to ensure they are deducting as much as possible.
Yes. We will provide you with complete transparency around fees, commissions, and options that you have and work with you to figure out what is best suited to your needs.
Yes. In some circumstances we do sell products that have no commissions. It depends which products are right for the client.
Yes. We are very fee conscious and are always looking at a number of different options to be sure to suggest the ones that will work best for the clients’ situations. Remember though that it is about more than just the fee but the end result of how much you are making. We manage our portfolios to ensure you are getting the best and you really do get what you pay for in this industry.
No. Our model is a financial planning model and being an independent firm allows us the time to spend on your planning without having to charge extra for it.